Instead of using the information provided by hosting companies, we actually sign up for each WooCommerce hosting provider and thoroughly test their services.
We use professional third-party benchmarking tools like Pingdom, LoadImpact, and Bitcatcha. We run thorough tests for the performance and reliability of each company, so we can help you choose the best WooCommerce hosting for your business.
For accurate testing across all WooCommerce hosting companies, we create a sample website for each hosting provider. After that, we install a default theme and fill the site with dummy data including images and media. This way our tests resemble an average website.
Here is our step-by-step testing process:
First, we use Pingdom, an industry-leading website speed test service, to measure our sample website speed across multiple WooCommerce hosting companies.
Next, we use the Load Impact service to send virtual users (VU) to each website to see how the hosting server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once. This helps us see how the individual WooCommerce hosting company would perform during peak traffic.
Last but not least, we use the Bitcatcha service to test server response times across numerous geographical locations including the United States, London, Singapore, Sao Paulo, India, Sydney, and Japan. This helps us decide which WooCommerce hosting is best for which geographical location.
Now that you know our test process, let’s compare the performance of the best WooCommerce hosting companies.
SiteGround is one of the top-rated hosting companies in the WooCommerce community. They provide unique in-house performance optimization and security which is why they’re an officially recommended WooCommerce hosting provider
Here are the results from our SiteGround performance tests:
As you can see in the test result, our SiteGround test site loaded in less than a second (649 ms to be precise) for a server in Dallas, Texas. Our test site is faster than 95% of tested sites, which is incredible.
After that, we ran the Load Impact test on SiteGround servers. We gradually built up to 100 unique visitors at once to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once.
In this chart, the blue line indicates the number of active virtual users on the site. The green line is the server load time. SiteGround performed almost consistently except for a spike at 50 users on the site. It quickly recovered and page load time remained steadily low even with more users.
Next, we ran a response time test, we used Bitcatcha to test a more accurate server response time from various geographical locations.
Our SiteGround test site performed really well in the United States and all other locations except Japan.
If your audience is in Asia, then you can ask SiteGround to move you to their Asia-Pacific servers to remedy this.
A detailed SiteGround review, also evaluated their customer support, features, and pricing.
After analysis, we find SiteGround to be a great option for WooCommerce hosting for startups because their support is incredibly helpful.
- PROS: Best WordPress support, good uptime, fast speed, and free SSL.
- PROS: Officially recommended by WordPress and WooCommerce
- PROS: Free Site Migration
- CONS: No free domain and GoGeek Plan is slightly expensive
Bluehost is one of the largest hosting companies in the world and an officially recommended WooCommerce hosting provider.
Here are the results from our Bluehost performance tests:
As you can see in the screenshot above, our test site loaded in less than two seconds. That’s faster than 85% of all tested websites. Considering that the test site wasn’t using any caching plugins, this result is very good.
Next, we ran the Load Impact test on the Bluehost site. We gradually built up to 100 unique visitors at once to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once.
Here is the resulting screenshot:
In this chart, the blue line indicates the number of active virtual users on the site, and the green line is the server load time. As you can see the server load remained stable throughout the test even at peak traffic.
In the next phase, we used Bitcatcha to test server response time more accurately from different geographical locations.
Response times for our Bluehost test site were exceptionally great in the United States loading under a fraction of a second. Response time in other locations was a bit higher but still under less than a second.
If your target customers are in the United States, then this would hugely benefit your WooCommerce store.
We also evaluated their customer support, features, and pricing. After this thorough analysis, we believe that Bluehost is a great WooCommerce hosting provider to start your online store.
- PROS: 50% off WooCommerce hosting + Free Domain + Free SSL
- PROS: Officially recommended by WooCommerce and WordPress
- PROS: Pre-installed WooCommerce Site
- CONS: Sometimes support can be slow
WP Engine is one of the most popular managed WordPress and WooCommerce hosting providers. They offer in-house performance optimization and managed updates. 1-click staging environment, and more.
Here are the results from our WP Engine performance tests:
As you can see, our test site loaded in less than a second for a server in New York City, NY. That’s faster than 96% of all tested sites. Considering that we didn’t need to install any performance optimization this result is quite good.
But how does WP Engine performs under traffic?
We ran the Load Impact test on the WPEngine server where we gradually built up to 100 unique visitors at once to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once.
The green line represents page load time and the blue line represents the number of users on the site. As you can see, our test site performed really well up to 80 users, and after that it started to slow down.
As you can see in the chart, the WP Engine server performance remained steady throughout the test as the number of users increased.
After the load impact test, we used Bitcatcha to test a more accurate server response time from various geographical locations.
As you can see in the results, WP Engine server response time remained less than half a second in all geographic locations. It was particularly great in the United States.
We also evaluated their customer support, features, and pricing. After our analysis, we find WP Engine to be the best option for managed WordPress and WooCommerce hosting.
- PROS: Optimized for WordPress and WooCommerce with a stable managed hosting platform
- PROS: 1-click staging environment, free SSL, and integrated support to add CDN service as an addon
- PROS: Excellent customer support and a custom hosting control panel
- CONS: Prices are slightly higher for a starter WooCommerce store, but totally worth the $$$.
Liquid Web Hosting
Liquid Web is another popular choice among the WooCommerce and WordPress communities. They offer multiple levels of WooCommerce hosting plans including VPS, cloud sites, managed, and dedicated plans with 24/7 support.
Here are the test results from our Liquid Web performance tests:
As you can see in the test result, our Liquid Web test site loaded in less than a second for a server in San Jose, California. That means our site is faster than 91% of tested sites.
Next, we ran the Load Impact test on Liquid Web servers where we gradually built up to 100 unique visitors at once to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once.
The blue line is the number of active virtual users on the site, and the green line is the server load time. As you can see the server load remained stable throughout the test even at peak traffic.
After that, we ran a response times test to see how fast Liquid Web servers respond to requests from different geographic locations.
As you can see in the results, the Liquid Web test site responded within less than a second. The response time was particularly higher in the United States.
We also evaluated their customer support, features, and pricing.
After our analysis, we find Liquid Web to be a reliable option for WooCommerce hosting for all sizes of online stores.
- PROS: Powerful managed cloud hosting that is incredibly fast.
- PROS: Fully managed servers, SSL included, excellent support.
- PROS: Easy to scale as your business grows. Great for Enterprise.
- CONS: Price is higher than shared WooCommerce hosting providers
HostGator is one of the top web hosting companies. They host over 8 million domains.
Here are the results from our HostGator performance tests:
As you can see in the screenshot, our test site loaded in just under a second for a server in Dallas, Texas. That’s faster than 94% of all tested sites. Considering that our test site wasn’t using any caching plugins or performance optimization tips, this result is great.
Next, we wanted to test how does HostGator perform during peak traffic?
We ran the Load Impact test on HostGator servers. We gradually built up to 100 unique visitors at once to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once.
In this chart, the green line indicates page load time and the blue line represents the number of users on the site. As you can see, our test site performed really well up to 80 users, after that it started to slow down.
It is quite normal for shared hosting environments as you share server resources with other sites on the server. As your WooCommerce store grows you’ll need to move to VPS or managed hosting providers.
Next, we tested the server response time from different geographic locations. We used Bitcatcha to test a more accurate server response time.
As you can see our test site responded in less than a second for all locations. In the United States, the response time was merely 37 ms.
We also evaluated HostGator’s customer service, pricing, and features:
- PROS: Fast and reliable with good support
- PROS: WPBeginner website is hosted with HostGator
- PROS: Free Site Migration
- CONS: No free domain and renewal fees are higher
* Note: You will need to use the Business plan to get private SSL which is needed to accept online payments.
Best WooCommerce Hosting (Quick Recap)
Now that you have compared the performance results of the top WooCommerce hosting companies, you need to decide which is the best for your eCommerce business.
To make it easier, we have created a table with a side-by-side feature list, so you can easily compare the best WooCommerce hosting companies.
|Hosting||Cost||Free Domain||Free SSL||1-Click Install|
In our in-depth WooCommerce hosting review, we believe that if you are looking to start an online store, then Bluehost is your best option. Their plans are affordable and include free domain and free SSL for $6.95 per month. By far the best value.
If you have a mid-to-large eCommerce store, then you should go with WP Engine because they offer a completely hassle-free experience. While the cost is slightly higher, it’s worth the money.
In fact, you can’t go wrong with any of the best WooCommerce hosting companies that we have compared above. They all offer blazing fast servers, great uptime, excellent support, and prices for different budgets.
WooCommerce Hosting FAQs
Having helped thousands of users, we have heard just about every hosting question. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about WooCommerce hosting:
Do I need WooCommerce hosting to start an online store?
If you are building an online store with WooCommerce, then you’ll need WooCommerce hosting. Hosting is the place where all your website’s files are stored. Every website and online store uses a hosting provider.
Can I install WooCommerce on my shared WordPress hosting account?
Yes, you can. However, shared WordPress hosting plans are designed to cater to the needs of small businesses and personal websites. WooCommerce is a transactional app that needs more resources particularly when you have more than a hundred customers on your website. This is why you need a WooCommerce hosting plan so that you can run your online store without any downtime and at faster speeds.
Are there any free WooCommerce hosting providers?
None that we are aware of. Even if you find free WooCommerce hosting, we will strongly recommend that you stay away from them. In most cases, free hosting providers put advertisements on your website. They may even distribute malware to your customers. Last but not least, they can shut down your website at any time without any notification. Avoid anyone who offers to give you free hosting, especially if you are serious about your site.
How much does it cost to build an online store with WooCommerce?
The total cost of your WooCommerce store is calculated based on hosting costs, domain name, and SSL certificate. The cost of maintaining your online store grows as your business grows.
I already purchased a domain. Can I use it with my WooCommerce hosting?
Yes, you can. Once you purchase a domain name, you are free to use it with any hosting company. All you need to do is go to your domain settings and point its DNS to your WooCommerce hosting company. Each of our top WooCommerce hosting companies has step-by-step instructions on how to do that. See our guide on the difference between a domain name and web hosting.
Do I need to buy a domain and WooCommerce hosting from the same company?
No, you don’t. You can buy a domain name from one company and WooCommerce hosting from another. However, it does help to get them from the same company as you will not have to change DNS settings, and you will be able to manage your domain and hosting under the same dashboard.
Do I need to buy any add-ons when signing up for WooCommerce hosting?
During the signup process, some hosting companies will offer to sell you add-on services. You can safely uncheck them as they would add to the cost of your hosting bill. Later on, if you feel you need one of these add-on services, then you can simply add them to your hosting plan from your account dashboard.
How many customers can these WooCommerce hosting companies handle?
All hosting companies in our best WooCommerce hosting list handle millions of pageviews every day. They are all equipped to handle smaller stores as well as large online stores even during peak holiday shopping traffic.
The traffic your site can handle largely depends on the plan you choose. With shared WooCommerce hosting providers like Bluehost, SiteGround, and HostGator, your website will be able to handle 1,000 – 5,000 visitors a day with speed optimization.
With managed hosting providers, you should be able to handle as much traffic as you need because their team would automatically scale your account as needed.
Do WooCommerce hosting companies keep backups of my site?
Yes, many of them do. However, we don’t recommend relying on your hosting company’s backups. You must always create your own backups by using a WordPress backup plugin.
Can I change my WooCommerce hosting later?
Yes, you can totally change your WooCommerce hosting company if you are unhappy with them. Most hosting companies offer migration services that you can utilize with minimum downtime. You can also move your website on your own.
What are the best WooCommerce hosting companies in your opinion? Conclusion
Our three top choices for WooCommerce hosting are:
- SiteGround – Overall best WooCommerce hosting for growing businesses (use the GoGeek plan).
- Bluehost – Best value hosting for WooCommerce includes over $1000 of premium extensions.
- WP Engine – Best for large eCommerce sites that need top-notch performance, support, and scalability.
This last question is not by mistake. We still get this question even when we refer users to this guide.
We hope that this guide helped you find the best WooCommerce hosting for your online store.
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